Pottery & Ceramics Industry Case Study


Our client worked at:

  • Josiah Wedgwood & Sons (from 1983 to to 1987)
  • Wedgwood Johnson Brothers (from 1987/88 to 1990/91)
  • Royal Doulton (from 1991 to 1999).

Exposure to Noise

Our client was employed as a Flat Edge Sponger in the Flat Shop from approximately 1983 to 1987 and then as Quick Release Sponger from approximately 1991 to 1999.

Our client’s duties involved working on the sponging machines and amongst the making machines and dryers. When he worked overtime at weekends he would work in the flat shop where he worked with dust presses and kilns. The noise caused by the machinery he worked with was so noisy that it was impossible for him to hold a conversation with somebody only four feet away without at least raising his voice.

What did we have to establish?

We had to establish the following basic matters:

  • Our client did have noise induced hearing loss
  • He was employed by the defendants
  • He was exposed to excessive levels of noise
  • The defendants owed our client a duty of care and were negligent in failing to provide hearing protection, training and supervision.

How did we help?

In order to progress the case we had to:

  • Discuss with our client how and where he worked to establish a picture of his exposure to noise.
  • Assess the time limits involved in the case
  • Arrange for him to undergo a hearing test
  • Establish whether the companies still existed and contact the relevant insures notifying of the claim.
  • Arrange a medical report
  • Correspond with the defendants insurers and advise them of their breach of duty and negligence
  • Advise the client on the prospects of the case and discuss how we had valued the claim.
  • Negotiate settlement

The Outcome

Eventually we were able to negotiate a settlement of nearly £5,000 for what was a mild hearing loss, without the need for court proceedings.